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16th Mar 2019

Darren Till rushes stage in attempt to confront Ben Askren

Askren is in London to ruffle some feathers

Darragh Murphy

Ben Askren rubs most welterweights up the wrong way.

Askren has brought a new fold to the 170lbs division with his unique style of trash-talking and some rivals are willing to let ‘Funky’ get away with more than others.

One man who clearly has little time for Askren’s antics is Darren Till, the Scouser who is set to return from his failed shot at the welterweight title with a main event slot against Jorge Masvidal this weekend.

Throughout a respectful build-up to the UFC London main event with Masvidal, Till has grown increasingly frustrated by Askren’s insistence on commenting on the division and it almost came to a head on Friday.

With all the fighters competing on the UFC London card preparing to take to the stage, Askren was taking part in a predictably divisive Q&A session with fans.

And that’s when Till rushed from backstage to tell Askren exactly what he thought of him as he flashed two middle fingers in the direction of the American wrestler, accompanying the gesture with a heartfelt “Fuck Ben Askren!”

Askren continues to reject fans’ suggestions that he ought to run it back with Robbie Lawler after the controversial way that his UFC debut ended earlier this month and ‘Funky’ sounds determined to share the Octagon with Till after this weekend.

“Askren’s fight comes, but Askren’s been in the UFC five minutes. It’s not about what he wants. It’s about what I want,” Till said of Askren’s challenge.

“I’m here, I’m No. 3. Seventh fight, fourth main event. I call the shots, not Ben. And the champ will be calling the shots, so we’ll see. I know the champ wants to fight me. I’ve spoken about it with him face-to-face. So, all goes well for me Saturday, I’m praying and hoping, and then I want to campaign for that title shot.”